Woman Wednesday: Christine


Q and A with Christine, Boulder, Colorado

“When I did say ‘yes’ to trying something new and get out of my comfort zone, I almost always had a blast and was so proud that I accomplished something new.”


Q: What are you passionate about? 

A: I’m passionate about many things such as business, health, family, God, and helping people thrive by bringing them up and helping them see their potential that they have lost seeing. I currently am a project control analyst at Ball Aerospace, and I love my job so much. I get to work for an amazing company that provides crucial ideas, objects, and units that help keep our country safe from the ground up. As a young woman, starting my career at a place like Ball is empowering. I feel respected, I feel valued for all my opinions, I’m learning so many new things every day, and I get to use my passion for helping those around me by leading team meetings that remind everyone that even though we are working from home, we are a team and we are here for each other. I get to facilitate Q&A’s that the team have and haven’t voiced since working remotely has made people lose their voice that much more. By leading these team meetings, I help rebuild and restore our strength as a team, I get to build people back up and give them a place to vent all their worries, questions, and concerns, while also allowing them to have a place to speak their mind and say what’s working best for them and what they want to see happen in the future. From these meetings, management gets to hear from us all and everyone’s ideas, concerns, and voices all get heard and people couldn’t be happier, which makes me so happy. I thrive knowing I’m helping others to thrive and feel confident too!


Q: What were your younger years like?

A: My younger years were amazing; I couldn’t of asked for a better childhood. I grew up in Boulder, Colorado, in a great area and apartment complex where all us kids would constantly play outside together, explore what nature had to offer, and we all felt safe even though there wasn’t always a parent watching over us all. I’m the youngest of two; I have an older brother and having him made me feel as though I got interested in what men liked too like sports, video games, and wrestling around with one another. I am very girly, but because of him, I also am a girl that doesn’t mind getting her knees dirty, playing videos games with my boyfriend, and watching sports. My mom was a stay at home mom when we both were very young. She cooked and cleaned the house daily, she took naps with us, and really just made the house so warm and loving. My dad owned a restaurant at the local mall that was down the street from our house and, because of that, we went to the mall often for the free food and the really fun arcade place they had there. Having the freedom to be around so many kids in my community and then being able to run around the mall knowing everyone knew my brother and I (that we were my dad’s kids), they all would watch over us and we always felt so safe and a huge sense of community.

There is truly nothing better than being exposed to a diverse group of people at such young ages. It helped us understand other cultures. I grew up as both Christian and Catholic. God has always been at the forefront of my life. I have a big heart, and growing up with my dad owning a restaurant, whenever other kids from my school or neighborhood were hungry, my brother and I would take them to eat at my dad’s restaurant and my dad was always more than happy to feed anyone for free that needed the help. I learned how to give and help others in their time of need at a young age. My dad was always helping anyone out that truly needed it. God has always placed me where I needed to be in order to help the people He needed me to help and in order to thrive in areas He needed me to thrive in. Being able to help people and to motivate them and spread positivity in this world has always brought me so much pleasure, and I know that that comes from my religion and love for God and the love He has placed in me and the compassion and love He gave me for other people.


Q: What is something valuable you’d like others to know?

A: Something valuable I’ve learned that I want others to know is that life is too short. As we’ve all heard this many times in our life, it’s true. I blew off group gatherings before because I was tired or wasn’t in the mood that night. I’ve wasted some opportunities to go out and try new things because I was nervous to do so or too scared, and I’ve said no to potential job opportunities because I wasn’t sure if it was for me. We’ve all done things like that, and what I’ve learned was when I did say ‘yes’ and push through to go out with friends even though I was so tired, I almost always ended up having such a great time. When I did say ‘yes’ to trying something new and get out of my comfort zone, I almost always had a blast and was so proud that I accomplished something new. And when I did allow a random job opportunity to come into my life, it didn’t always work out, but sometimes, even if I left with just meeting inspiring and wonderful people, that was worth it to me. Life is too short to be unhappy, to over stress, to worry and be anxious. We don’t truly take advantage of every day, every minute, and every waking breath we are given by God. We need to let go of the nonsense, worry and stress less, get rid of toxic people and habits in our lives, and learn to take advantage of our everyday gifts of life. Meet new people, try new things, say ‘yes’ to the chances you do have to hang with the people you love, put yourself out there every once and a while, and don’t waste your life. You never want to look back and say, “I wish I did that, I wish I said yes, I wish I could hang with that person just one more time, etc.” You want to know that you lived a good life, made your mistakes, but came back stronger every time and really love that life you are living with the right people in your life and the right career. Life is too short, be happy, love hard, giggle as loud as you want, and eat that piece of cake!


Q: What does feminism mean to you? 

A: Feminism means a few things to me. It means equal pay and equal rights amongst men and women, but it’s also more than that. When females come together and build each other up instead of tear each other down, I love that. I love seeing women who feel weak be empowered by other women, have their crown readjusted and put back together by other women helping them and rebuilding them to be the strong, confident queens. I hate seeing women tear each other apart through their own insecurities. When we come together, help each other out, build each other’s confidences back up, and stay strong together, we are one heck of a tight force that no one can then mess with. Empowering each other, inspiring and motivating one another, and pushing each other further than our comfort zone makes my heart full and that to me is what feminism should be all about.


Q: Is there anything else you want to tell readers?

A: I want to thank Samantha for reaching out to me and giving me this opportunity to be a part of this wonderful website. When she did that, it reiterated how I love when people are so kind to one an another and when you can inspire people you don’t even know is watching. I love inspiring people for the positive and knowing I somehow did that to her by posting my usual posts, that felt amazing. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to be a part of this!

Thank you for reading!



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Woman Wednesday: Lynda


Q and A with Lynda, Long Island, NY

“I feel we live in a world where people have become very egocentric, not necessarily because we want to be, but because social media feeds into it and says it’s okay.”


“As a child in elementary school, my mother was told I would never go to college because I wasn’t smart enough.”


Q: What are you passionate about? 

A: I am passionate about so many things. Besides being passionate about being a Christian woman of faith, wife for 24 years to the love of my life, and mom of three pretty great kids, I have always loved my 20+ year career as a speech language pathologist.

In my field, I feel rewarded when I can help improve the communication skills of others to help them succeed in whatever situation they find themselves. Be it interviews, customer service, presentations, conflicts, leadership skills, or personal relationships, we all need to be able to communicate our best selves in each situation and more.


Q: What were your younger years like?

A: I grew up on Long Island in a family that embodied both the Italian and Jewish cultures. Growing up was always about food and family and getting together with extended relatives whenever humanly possible. Yes, it was always loud with many people speaking at the same time! I also come from a family of 3 electricians that believe in hard work to get any job done. Heck, I could have been an electrician if I wanted. Growing up in not only a tight-knit family, but also a Christian home, is the basis of how I formed my strength in my family, faith, and wanting to help people.

As a child in elementary school, my mother was told I would never go to college because I wasn’t smart enough. I always struggled with reading, so I guess that’s how they made that determination. Something I always found joy in was singing…so much so that I took private lessons, sang in many groups and, proving the elementary schools wrong, was a vocal performance major in college. In my sophomore year of college, I was introduced to speech pathology by a professor teaching phonetics. She opened up a whole new world to me that I didn’t even know existed. While I loved singing, I disliked the competitive cutthroat nature of it all. When I realized many singers required speech pathologists to help with their vocal health, that was it, this is what I wanted to do.

While in graduate school, I worked with elementary school children as a speech therapist within the Florida school system. During that time, I found that I enjoyed helping children succeed with their speech and language skills, giving them the tools they needed to communicate with others to help them be social, interactive, and connect with their peers and adults. After receiving my master’s degree in 1998, I moved back to NY as an ASHA and NY state certified speech pathologist working with preschool/elementary level children.

Years later, I began working with teenagers and young adults who were also diagnosed as needing to improve their communication skills. I loved working with them even more. I saw how obtaining the communication skills improved every area of their lives, especially when it came to their work situations where these skills were imperative to their success outside the classroom.

Fast forward 10 years, 3 kids, and the explosion of technology and social media…I found that it wasn’t just my students who were diagnosed that required help with their communication skills; it was everyone all around me! From my children’s friends to the salesperson at the car dealership, from the cashier at the fast food restaurants to the hostess at an expensive steakhouse where you spend $500 for a dinner; they all exhibited difficulty with communicating in a way that acknowledged the people around them. I thought I was the only one who thought communication skills had become a bigger problem and that social media had desensitized people on how to understand and use interpersonal communication skills. Then, there it was on the news; something that confirmed and validated everything I was thinking and feeling, LinkedIn had completed a study identifying communication skills as the #1 skills gap in the work environment across America. It was clear that people were no longer aware of how important these skills are in order to succeed professionally and personally. It was clear I was onto something and knew, with my skills as a speech pathologist, I had to help others improve the art of great communication skills.

I decided to work on developing specific classes targeting communication skills and situations where you would need to have great communication for a specific purpose. I pitched my classes to a professional development administrator of a local college and they contracted me to instruct my classes to staff (administrators and professors) monthly for approximately a year. This propelled my husband to push me to open my own business, Antonetti Communications & Speech Consulting, PLLC. I now go to post-secondary trade schools to help them prepare for interviews, communicating with bosses, coworkers, and customers. To bring it full circle, my husband, who is in the electrical industry, had a connection with a trade school called the Electrical Training Center. They became my first trade school client and I have now been working with them for approximately 2 years. I have also worked at a few medical trade schools and have provided one-on-one coaching to help prepare for interviews. Additionally, I host a weekly podcast called “The Digital Divide,” where I record short episodes that provide communication tips. Currently, given the new world we live in, I am working on an online course to make it accessible to everyone.

While I continue to work part-time with my students who have been diagnosed with a deficit in their communication skills, I am excited about building my business. I want to build help and inspire those who want to transform their communication skills so they may be successful in all facets of life.


Q: What is something valuable you’d like others to know?

A: I feel we live in a world where people have become very egocentric, not necessarily because we want to be, but because social media feeds into it and says it’s okay. I want people to have the ability to truly connect with one another by being present when with others, having the ability to relate, built trust, have empathy, have compassion, and being able to genuinely listen to one another without judgement. I could go on and on about all the things I would love to help improve, but ultimately, it’s about being able to build long lasting trusting relationships, be that professionally or personally. For me, the key to that is by embodying the understanding and use of effective communication while keeping the other person in mind.


Q: What does feminism mean to you? 

A: To me, it means that, as a woman, I have the opportunity to succeed professionally and personally without oppression or judgment from others based on my gender. It means that I am given the same opportunities and am respected, not because I am a woman, because I am able to the job just as well or better than the next guy.


Thank you for reading!


I’d love to connect with you! Click the links below:

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Woman Wednesday: Alison

*Note: Woman Wednesday is a part of our blog. Each Woman Wednesday post will feature a woman who would like to share information in the hopes of inspiring and motivating other women. Comments are welcome below.         


Q and A with Alison W., Virginia Beach, Virginia

“Comparison is the thief of joy.” 

 

 Q: What are you passionate about?

A: I am passionate about helping women feel beautiful in their own skin. I am the owner of Wanderlust Dream Hair, and I sell hair toppers for women with thinning hair, women with hair loss due to medical conditions, and women who just want that extra volume! I have always had fine, thin hair and tried everything to make it appear thicker: hair extensions, volumizing spray, et cetera, but nothing really worked for me because traditional hair extensions do not address thinning on the top of your head. I also started medical treatment for chronic migraines that created even more hair loss, so I was motivated to find a solution. Then I discovered toppers! Toppers clip to the top of your existing hair and create the appearance of thicker, fuller hair.

 

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Body image is such a big issue for a lot of women. Most of us don’t realize that those celebrity hairstyles we covet are just wigs, toppers, or extensions. Hollywood paints a false picture of what a naturally beautiful woman looks like.

 

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Q: What were your younger years like?

A: My younger years were volatile. I was born with a limb difference (Poland syndrome), which means I only have two fingers on my right hand. So, confidence was a big issue for me growing up. Add thin hair to that, and you have a recipe for a wallflower. My mom was diagnosed with brain cancer and passed away when I was 13. I remember when she brought home her first wig from the wig bank. She hated it. It was hot and because it was made for someone else, it never fit her comfortably. She was embarrassed to leave the house somedays because of how she looked. I really wish that we had known about toppers back then. I think she would have loved them. My mom is a big part of my “why” when it comes to my business.

 

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Pictured: One of Alison’s clients using her Wanderlust Dream Hair topper

 

Q: What is something valuable you’d like others to know?

A: Something valuable I learned from a young age, due to my limb difference, is that sometimes you have to find your own way. You have to figure out how to do things yourself and not try to imitate someone else’s process because it might not work for you. I think this idea is helpful in life and in business. Comparison is the thief of joy. We are resilient, and it is amazing what we can do when we let go of traditional mindsets about how to do things and figure out what works for us. I’ve also learned to laugh at myself more. I started taking improv/comedy classes a couple of years ago. Being on stage is one of the most exhilarating things I have ever done. It has also boosted my confidence in general. The first rule of improv is to make your partner look good, which means saying yes to whatever they say. So, if they tell you that you are an alien, you are an alien. I’ve learned a lot about teamwork and confidence doing improv. I highly recommend improv; it is so good for the soul.

 

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Pictured: Before and after of one of Alison’s clients using her Wanderlust Dream Hair topper. Hair topper is shown on the right. 

 

Q: What does feminism mean to you?

A: Feminism is a word that has always had a bit of a negative connotation to me. I am more of an egalitarian; meaning in my marriage, we share all of the responsibilities. There is no such thing as woman’s work or man’s work. My husband is the better cook anyway! And I can lay a tile floor. I love busting through those gender expectations. I am definitely not anti-man, but I am definitely pro-woman! I think it is important for women to support other women. Yes, we have disadvantages in the workplace. Yes, we are not always treated equally. So, I think it is important to support and encourage each other as women instead of tearing each other down. We women can be super competitive, but I want to cheer on my competition. I want us all to win.

 

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I’d love to connect with you! 

 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/wanderlustdreamhair/

Website: https://www.wanderlustdreamhair.com/shop

 

 

Thoughts, questions, or comments?

Comment below! 🙂

Woman Wednesday: Idoia

*Note: Woman Wednesday is a part of our blog. Each Woman Wednesday post will feature a woman who would like to share information in the hopes of inspiring and motivating other women. Comments are welcome below.       


 

Q and A with Idoia, Barcelona, Spain 

 

“Once you are on stage, there is this magic, that it makes you shine even though you are under pressure. If you miss a step, the key is to continue no one is expecting you to be perfect but you! It about forgiving yourself and continuing. A mistake is an opportunity to grow.”

 

 

 

Q: What are you passionate about?

A: The best approach to life is to be passionate in every second. It may sound cliché; however, there is no other way to live life meaningfully. In my point of view, during our lives, we have the chance to make positive impacts in our environment by understanding that life is full of good intent. I am passionate about people. Each of us has a story—something to tell the world. As human beings, we all deserve to be unique and to make mistakes in order to learn.

 

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Having said that, I feel grateful to work for one of the biggest online travel agencies in the world. Why? Because we bring people together as well as the world itself. Traveling has helped me to awaken my mind, to be open-minded and to see how beautiful diversity is. My role at the company is to ensure that travelers find the best deals for accommodation. This allows me to have a close relationship with the hospitality industry while working for a highly innovative travel platform. I would say that unconsciously, since I was a child, I knew that my life would be linked to travel. I will always remember the family trips around Spain with the car or summer holidays somewhere in Europe.

 

 

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Q: What is something valuable you’ve learned that you’d like others to know?

A: I would highlight two lessons. The first one is to forgive yourself. Forgive yourself for not knowing everything. Forgive yourself for that time you did not say what you wanted. Forgive yourself for failing. This is something I learned not so long ago, as I realized how tough I was being to myself. Indeed, it is essential to forgive to overcome difficult situations where you think you have failed. If there is not forgiveness, it will be much more difficult to continue your journey. It will feel as if you had an issue that had not been resolved with yourself.

 

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The second one is to be kind to others. When you meet someone, you don’t really know their story and what they have been through. In my view, each person behaves in a certain way because of a reason. Don’t blame that person for not being what you expected; there is probably an explanation for their behavior. Let the other person open up and tell you their story. Read what they are not able to say with words. We are sometimes afraid of showing vulnerability to others, while that is the moment when you are more honest and truthful to others and to yourself.

 

Q: What were your younger years like? 

A. I grew up in the northern region of Spain, in a beautiful region called Basque Country near the city of Bilbao.  I used to live in a little town close to the beach, and I played in the street until I was a teenager. I have now been living in Barcelona for three years, as I moved there to study for a bachelor’s degree in tourism and hospitality management.

 

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I remember my childhood full of curiosity—always wanting to try new things and ready for adventure. For instance, I used to dance urban style dances since I was nine years, then my older sister encouraged me to take up ballet lessons at the age of thirteen. I felt completely lost for the first year! I thought about giving up, but there was something that I found in ballet that completely changed my perspective of life. I understood how important is to accept myself in front of a mirror, both physically, but mainly, psychologically. Furthermore, to see how in life one should reflect, think, and then act. This is, I would say, how you find balance in life (but also in ballet 😉).  As I continued practicing ballet, I felt that I wanted to improve and learn more and more. It helped me to be resilient and to apply it to school, goals, personal relationships. When it was time for the summer festival of the dance school, we used to feel pressured the last weeks before the show. That is when I learned to trust myself and not to be frightened about failing. Once you are on stage, there is this magic, that it makes you shine even though you are under pressure. If you miss a step, the key is to continue; no one is expecting you to be perfect but you! It’s about forgiving yourself and continuing. A mistake is an opportunity to grow.

 

 

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Q: What do you want others to learn from your story?

A: I feel that I am constantly learning and figuring out who I want to be. I do not believe in the only truth or the only answer. However, I have recently understood the importance of putting life in perspective and not making comparisons with others. We sometimes tend not to appreciate all we have in life because of making comparisons with others. This is especially relevant nowadays—as we are connected to other people’s lives in social networks 24/7. It is easy to compare yourself with the person you see on Instagram. Is it even fair to compare yourself with someone you don’t really know? It is not; you need to put in perspective your own goals and to look for inspiration rather than an exact role model.

 

I have learned that if I try to follow a role model, I forget about who I am and where I am going. I believe that even if you are not completely sure of where you want to be in the future, you already know where you do not want to be. This means that by following other’s steps, you do not necessarily end up where you want to go. It is more likely to feel that you have lost a chance to find your own way.

 

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Q: What does feminism mean to you? 

A: Feminism is the change to a more open and free society. It is not about just women or men; it is about the role models that have historically been associated with women and men. Feminism fights for women to be able to break the existing roles and to be whatever we want to be. It is the way to eliminate the barriers to do or act in a certain way because of the fact of being a woman.  For those who think that feminism is just about women, I would say that it is also about defending for men to be able to have different roles as well. For instance, many say that men shouldn’t cry, while feminism defends that men should be able to cry like any other human being.

Furthermore, feminism is also about creating a support bond with another woman. In other words, not to look at other women as competition, but creating a sisterhood relationship. Luckily, I feel that this change is happening within the women around me—at work and with my friends.

I believe that feminism is a small word for such a big meaning. There is a phrase of Simone de Beauvoir which states a deep message about feminism: “Feminism is a way of living individually but fighting collectively.”

 

 

 

Connect with me! I’d love to chat with you! 

 

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www.instagram.com/idoiahn

 

 

 

 

 

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Woman Wednesday: Julianne

*Note: Woman Wednesday is a part of our blog. Each Woman Wednesday post will feature a woman who would like to share information in the hopes of inspiring and motivating other women. Comments are welcome below.     


 

Q and A with Julianne, Hartford County, Connecticut

 

“It’s all up to us whether we decide to use our broken pieces as a weapon or as a crutch.”   

 

 

Q: What are you passionate about?

A: Teaching others to fish. I saw a picture in a National Geographic when I was 13. This imprinted on my heart how I wanted to serve during my lifetime. The picture was actress Drew Barrymore in another country feeding a very long line of children. The kids did not have anything to eat, so their hands were out waiting for the “slop.” Their expressions seemed to be so grateful, yet they were so malnourished. It’s been 28+ years since I stumbled upon this photograph, but I see and feel like it was yesterday. I long to work full time with the youth in underprivileged areas to have an impact on the rest of their lives.

 

 

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Currently, I speak in front a few hundred at a time. I just launched my 3rd stream of income in a wellness project. The C word is everywhere. (Cancer). It stole my big sister when she was 27. This was also a huge variable that has shaped me and my grit. I train folks on “tapping into their own human potential” and the importance of multiple streams of income. I’m excited to see it laid out. And I am always happy to inspire others.

 

 

Q: What is something valuable you’ve learned that you’d like others to know?

A: We all bleed the same. Everyone has a story. Those of us with the toughest experiences make the toughest humans. It’s all up to us whether we decide to use our broken pieces as a weapon or as a crutch.

 

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Q: What were your younger years like? 

A. I grew up with my mom, who is a genius, literally. She has worked for the government for 35 years. And my dad is 100% American Indian, the Lumbee tribe. My younger years were, um, toxic and LOUD to describe it lightly. I found soccer to escape. Soccer offered me friendship, peace, confidence, and family. I clung to the soccer ball for so long. I was awarded almost a full scholarship to play Division 1 at a local state university. Soccer had a lot to do with who I am today.

 

 

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Pictured: Julianne and her parents.

 

 

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Pictured: Julianne and her daughters.

 

 

Q: What does feminism mean to you? 

A: Feminism means strength. Women are absolute warriors. So often, I’ve found, women have fallen into a trap behind a man. Or behind our children. Being a mother of 3, I’ve found out how capable and strong I really am. We get even more dangerous (in a good way) when women unite…Watch out world!

 

 

 

Connect with me! I’d love to chat with you! 

 

Instagram:

http://www.instagram.com/Julianne.j

Phone number:

860-866-6365

 

 

 

 

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